For the third year in a row I had the honor to attend one of my favorite events all year. There is nothing else in this world that can put a smile on my face quite like a familiar Grateful Dead tune can. This year at Dark Star Jubilee was just as beautiful as the last three. I couldn’t have picked a better way to spend my Memorial Day weekend. As I walked through the gates, and to the top of the ridge of the pine trees, I remembered what it was like to feel at home.
Vibrant splashes of neon color filled the rolling hills of Wisconsin the weekend of August 9th-11th, as fans from all around the Midwest came to celebrate the second annual Summer Set Music Festival. Packing the place with an average of 15,000 attendees per day, slightly up from last year’s average, the festival maintained a substantial crowd throughout the day and into the night’s major acts.
Florida is a place unto itself, by my estimation. Like the other ‘big states’ of Texas and California, it takes on its own unique identity and presence. These states are so large, they are their own ‘region;’ and again by my estimation, include elements of all that is around them. Florida is neither just southern, nor merely coastal. Florida has elements of east coast culture, due in no small measure to the strong concentration of New York retirees, the so-called ‘snow birds.’ Florida also has significant aspects of Cuban and Mexican culture elements, as well.
On Sunday, the revelers at the second annual Mile High Music Festival were granted a temporary reprieve from the heat. The sky was cloudy, and lo! The grounds were clean! The night before, as I waded through a sea of discarded plastic beer cups, it occurred to me that perhaps a better way to save the planet would have been to sell freely refillable beer cups, in the hopes that folks would use the same cup all day, rather than burning through five or six. Now I’m all in favor of just about any recycling program you could think of, but refillable beer